California law requires an employer to establish, implement, and maintain written safety and health programs that are very important for maintain safety in agricultural field operations. An effective safety and health program can help an employer lower risk and better manage work-related injuries and illnesses. Recognition for safe work practices and a positive environment where employees can report unsafe work practices and hazards without fear of reprisal are key elements in any successful safety program.

Important elements of a successful safety program include the following:

Arizona’s minimum wage will rise to $13.85 an hour, up from $12.80 an hour, starting Jan. 1, 2023.

Annual increases are mandated by Proposition 206, which Arizonans approved in 2016. That ballot measure steadily bumped up the minimum wage from $8.05 an hour in 2016 to $12 an hour by Jan. 1, 2020. The state’s minimum wage is now tied to inflation, as measured by the Consumer Price Index for urban workers.

The United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) announced its final rule this week in establishing traceability recordkeeping requirements for those who manufacture, process, pack, or hold certain foods, including leafy greens, nut butters, fresh-cut fruits and vegetables and ready-to-eat deli salads, for inclusion on the Food Traceability List (FTL).

The requirements established in the final rule are designed to:

Michelle Rivera

The Western Growers Family of Companies mourns the passing of former board member Tom D. Bengard, patriarch of Bengard Ranch and a beloved agricultural industry veteran.

Tom came from a family of true agricultural pioneers in the Salinas Valley. His grandparents, James Bardin and Wes Eade, journeyed to California in the late 1800s in search of rich farming and grazing land. A little less than 100 years later, grandchildren Tom and Terry Bengard established Tom Bengard Ranch, Inc. in 1961 as a grower-shipper operation.

Michelle Rivera

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Western Growers members care deeply for the food they grow, the land they sustain, the people they employ, and the community in which they live.